Ivey announces plans to widen I-565, Huntsville Brownsferry Rd
Two important thoroughfares in north Alabama are set to receive major improvements.
Speaking to a delegation from the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber of Commerce during the chamber’s annual Montgomery visit on Wednesday, Governor Kay Ivey announced plans to widen I-565 to six lanes and resurface the crucial interstate spur to I-65. This will be part of the first phase of new infrastructure revenue and upgrades made possible by the Rebuild Alabama Act.
Expansion of the Tanner interchange for I-65 in Limestone County was also announced.
Additionally, Huntsville Brownsferry Road (also known as Browns Ferry Road) will be widened to be extended westward across to U.S. Highway 31 in a second phase to allow for easier access to I-65 for drivers using that road to get to and from the under-construction Mazda Toyota plant.
All of the projects are in anticipation of needing significantly increased traffic capacity when the plant is completed.
“While the Huntsville and surrounding areas are booming with continual economic growth, it was imperative we make enhancements to their infrastructure system for the nearly 60,000 vehicles traveling on I-565 daily. Both improvement projects will be significant strides for this area,” Ivey said in a statement. “This will improve the daily commute for several thousand drivers and provide access to the new Mazda-Toyota joint assembly plant. When we began on the road to Rebuild Alabama, I promised our state would see real results, real improvements and a promising future, and we’re certainly delivering on that.”
The project announcements came the same day that State Sen. Tom Butler (R-Huntsville) announced his appointment by Lt. Governor Will Ainsworth to the Joint Transportation Committee (JTC). The JTC was expanded under the Rebuild Alabama legislative package.
Butler’s district contains I-565.
In a statement, Butler said, “Throughout my campaign I stressed the importance of rebuilding and expanding infrastructure in North AL. The widening of I-565, HWY 72 from Huntsville through Madison and onto Athens, and HWY 53 from Huntsville to Ardmore are high priorities in serving multiple counties.”
I-565 will be widened from I-65 to County Line Road.
Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle expressed his enthusiasm for the projects, which were selected by the Alabama Department of Transportation for the Rebuild Alabama Act First Year Plan 2020.
Thank you @GovernorKayIvey for your commitment to resurfacing and expanding I-565. Adding lanes to this critical corridor ensures our continued economic growth.
— Tommy Battle (@TommyBattle) April 17, 2019
Speaker Mac McCutcheon (R-Monrovia) added his praise, too.
“I commend Governor Ivey’s leadership in passing Rebuild Alabama and her commitment to keep Alabama growing,” McCutcheon stated. “Additional lanes on Interstate 565 will greatly reduce congestion and aid commerce in one of the fastest growing regions of our state. I, along with my colleagues, are pleased to see such quick returns from the Rebuild Alabama Act passing.”
Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn